As a technician, it can be easy to underestimate how little the world owes you. When you are training or communicating with fellow employees or your supervisors, you’re all on the same team. You all understand the industry and have a common goal. That is a privileged space where you usually don’t have to use any extra persuasion to communicate what you need and make it happen.
The world is not like that. The world of service and sales owes you nothing, doesn’t know you and would be more than happy to move on to another company if you can’t convince them you are the best.
In so many ways, being in the service industry is like going through childhood changes. For example, my son. My son is transitioning from the age when mom and dad do everything for him to having to learn and do things on his own. Since I don’t want to raise a spoiled child who never escapes this time in early childhood, I have to teach him the value of persuasion and communication.
A child can probably get away with speaking to his parents disrespectfully or impatiently more than they’d like to admit, but they can’t communicate with strangers like this. If they go out into the world with no manners, no politeness and no power to communicate respectfully, they’re going to have a very difficult time. So will technicians.
When you step out of your home or drive your vehicle off the company lot, you don’t get to use informal and potentially disrespectful language or attitude with your customers — or anyone for that matter! That’s not how customers are persuaded to use your services, and that’s not how you want your team to represent you.
As owners and managers, it’s not your job to send happy technicians out into the community. It’s your job to make sure your team is successful at the job they are meant to do. Just like I am not raising my son solely on the mission to make him happy — I want him to be a successful adult. This means that giving your technicians and CSRs what’s comfortable and expected is not always the best option for their growth.
Persuasion is how you do your job successfully. When you have the skill to persuade your customers, you are doing them a service by showing them what service they need and why you are the best professional for the job. You can persuade a customer in many different ways: technical skill, communication, relatability, confidence. The point is, if you go out on the job expecting customers to understand you, like you and automatically choose you, you are in for a surprise.
We have to use persuasion, just like my son needs to use manners and respect to communicate positively with people around him. Basic courtesy and respect go a lot farther than you think.
If you are handling some similar challenges on your team, you have to try and break these habits. Whether they are caused by entitlement, previous jobs or lack of knowledge, your team absolutely has to learn this lesson. Here at Service Excellence, we understand that every technician is dealing with different obstacles, and that’s why we help solve individual problems. We never leave your team hanging!
If you’re ready for real-time, industry specific training, check out the resources on our website. Our coaches are ready to meet and help you push past your obstacles and find massive success! — Todd Liles
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